A Single Seed: Dependence

I've been thinking a lot lately about how to find joy in the midst of turmoil. With our lives now upside down, many things that may have brought us happiness in the past are gone for the time being, with no concrete return in sight. Visiting family, watching sports, get-togethers with friends, taking a cooking class, the list goes on & on of things that involved groups of people that are currently off-limits. It's completely normal to feel deflated when you're isolated ; joy can be hard to come by when the things that once lifted you up have been abruptly cut off. This combination of feelings leads me to a powerful question I find myself asking almost daily nowadays:

"What is my happiness dependent on?"

Do I need to be in a physical gym to feel like I'm happy with my workout? Or will a makeshift home gym of bags of books and jumprope make me happy? Do I need to still have movie nights with my friends in order to truly feel connected? Or will FaceTiming and texting scratch the itch until this passes? If my favorite coffee shops are all closed, does that mean I won't really enjoy the coffee I make at home?

I think in a way, just following our usual routines is what brought us at least some happiness. Knowing we had control over our schedules; when we would eat, where we would go after work, who we would see on the weekends. The autonomy we had over our lives brought a sense of underlying peace. But even now, we still have the power to choose happiness. We still have the ability to do things that can bring our moods up. These things are almost certainly different than a couple months ago, but they can still bring us joy. They bring us happiness. They bring us life.

Eventually, the things that once brought us up will return. But I hope by cultivating a sense of happiness with less, we can realize we don't need all of the external things we once thought we did on a daily basis. I'm learning every single day about what can lift my spirit, & I know that once this is all over, those things won't be tossed to the side. Hopefully, we can all end being a lot happier with a little less. What comes in from the outside means little compared to what still have on the inside.

"A Single Seed" is my attempt to get out one idea every day that I've learned or accumulated over the years, with the hope that it may stick in someone else's memory bank as well. The idea may be related to fitness, business, life, or philosophy, but I think you'll find that many can change domains if you wish them to. With each seed planted, a new life awaits.

Image credit: https://www.goodfreephotos.com/albums/united-states/wisconsin/madison/wisconsin-madison-sunrise